Govt. Halts Secret Shopper Health Probe

Wednesday, 29 Jun 2011 11:43 AM

By Martin Gould

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
|  A   A  
  Copy Shortlink
The Obama administration has canceled a “secret shopper” plan aimed at investigating primary care doctors after complaints that the scheme amounted to government snooping.

The “Big Brother” program was announced without fanfare two months ago and had been going smoothly until a New York Times article on Monday stirred outrage.

“After reviewing feedback received during the public comment period, we have determined that now is not the time to move forward with this research project,” the Department of Health and Human Services announced late Tuesday, Politico reported.

“Instead, we will pursue other initiatives that build on our efforts to increase access to health care providers nationwide.”

Republican Sen. Mark Kirk of Illinois led protests about the program, demanding more details about the program from HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. He praised her decision to kill the program. “The survey is duplicative of what we already know and funding should be spent solving problems, not studying them,” he said.

Family doctors quoted in the Times story were unanimous in criticizing the program. Dr. George Petruncio, of Turnersville, N.J., said, “This is not a way to build trust in government. Why should I trust someone who does not correctly identify himself?”

And Dr. Stephen Albrecht, from Olympia, Wash., added, “If federal officials are worried about access to care, they could help us. They don’t have to spy on us.”

The Times pointed to a study by the Massachusetts Medical Society that found that 53 percent of family doctors were not accepting new patients and those that did had an average 36-day waiting period to get an initial appointment.

HHS spokesman Christian Stenrud said administration access to primary care was a priority for the government. He said the plan, in which an army of supposed patients would call more than 4,000 doctors in nine states, would help the government “make sure we are doing everything we can to support primary care physicians, especially in communities where the need is greatest.”





© 2014 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Country
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
 
Hot Topics
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
Top Stories
You May Also Like

Study: Ebola Outbreak May Be Much Worse Than Reported

Wednesday, 22 Oct 2014 18:42 PM

There may be no way to predict how far the latest Ebola epidemic will go, a new study suggests. The news website Ozy rep . . .

Mark Steyn: Attacks Aimed at Canadian State, Not 'Senseless Violence'

Wednesday, 22 Oct 2014 18:30 PM

President Barack Obama and Canadian leaders are ignoring the facts when they downplay the recent attacks that killed two . . .

Mo Brooks: US Should Protect Its Northern Border

Wednesday, 22 Oct 2014 18:17 PM

The United States must be just as vigilant about protecting its northern border as it is on the Mexican border, says Rep . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved